Pastel de Tres Leches Three-Milk Cake

"Okay, I have to admit, this cake is a lot of work. But what a final presentation it makes! It is my favorite type of tres leches, but I don't make it often because it is a lot of work! The taste is worth all the effort!"
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Ready In:
1hr 35mins




  • Preheat oven to 350 degrees.
  • Oil a jellyroll baking pan (15x10) and line it with waxed paper oiled on both sides.
  • Separate the yolks and whites in 2 bowls.
  • Sift the flour and baking powder together.
  • Beat the yolks until light and lemon colored, about 20 minutes.
  • The consistency should be very thick, and when you lift the beaters, the mixture should fall in one solid mass, known as the"ribbon stage.
  • "Add 1/2 cup of the sugar, 2 tablespoons at a time.
  • Add the vanilla and beat 3 minutes more.
  • Whip the egg whites until soft peaks form.
  • Add the remaining 1/2 cup sugar slowly until it makes a meringue.
  • Add the whites to the yolks 1/3 at a time and fold in with a rubber spatula.
  • Add the flour all at once and fold in.
  • Spread the batter in the pan and bake for 20 to 30 minutes or until the cake comes away from the sides of the pan.
  • Let it rest for 5 minutes, then remove it from the pan and place on a clean tea towel that has been dusted with confectioner's sugar.
  • Remove the waxed paper by rubbing the top of the paper with a dry cloth all over the surface and peeling off.
  • Cover the cake with another tea towel and roll up the cake lengthwise in the towels, like a jellyroll, while still warm.
  • For the filling: Whip the cream and vanilla until soft peaks form.
  • Add the confectioner's sugar.
  • Add the strawberries to the whipped cream and fold in.
  • For the soaking liquid: Mix the milks with a whisk.
  • Add the liquor.
  • For the frosting: In a mixing bowl, beat the butter until soft and fluffy, about 10 minutes.
  • Add the vanilla and mix for 2 minutes.
  • Slowly add the confectioner's sugar until it is well incorporated.
  • Add the milk.
  • To assemble the cake: Unroll the cake and remove the tea towel from the top layer.
  • Spread the whipped cream mixture on the cake.
  • Using the bottom as leverage, roll it up lengthwise.
  • Transfer the cake to a serving tray seam side down.
  • Make holes in the cake with a skewer and drizzle the soaking liquid, slowly, letting it absorb bit by bit.
  • Cover the cake with the frosting.

Questions & Replies

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  1. Spice Jar
    While this cake is delicious (I would give it five stars), it tastes nothing like the pastel de tres leches I had in Mexico. It tastes more like strawberry shortcake. I will continue to look for a tres leches recipe.
  2. holly
    This is an wonderful recipe. It did take some time and it was my first time making pastel de tres leches. I ended up making it as a square layer cake instead of the roll because I had so much filling. I thought the frosting was too sweet. I added some whipped cream and still thought it a bit sweet. Next time, I will use just the whipped cream for the frosting. I made this for as a birthday cake for my Nanny who is from Mexico. She loved it!!


I'm a self-taught home cook who reads cookbooks like a novel. Then I try out all different nationalities of recipes, especially the more complicated ones...I love a challenge! I entertain often and enjoy cooking for others more than for myself. If my friends and family are happy eating my cooking, then I'm ecstatic!
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